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The San Pedro Sun

Foreign Affairs Ministers of Guatemala and Belize Meet
Guatemala and Belize’s Foreign Affairs ministers met on Thursday January 9th in Belize City. The main purpose of the visit was to strengthen dialogue as part of the confidence building measures between the two countries. During the meeting, the pending referendum to put the Guatemalan claim over portions of Belize to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) was discussed. Following the meeting between Fernando Carrera, Foreign Minister of Guatemala and Wilfred Elrington, Belize’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Government of Belize released a joint communiqué outlining the outcome of the meeting. According to the context, the Foreign Ministers agreed to establish, as soon as possible, a Joint Commission of the two countries, in accordance with Article 20 of the Agreement on the framework for negotiations and confidence building measures between Belize and Guatemala.

Sugar Cane Season scheduled to commence on Monday, January 20th
After several month of delay in the sugar cane season Belize Sugar Industry (BSI) has finally reached an agreement with the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) to commence the season on Monday, January 20th. In a press release issued on Monday, January 13th the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) announced that BSCFA and BSI have signed a memorandum to allow negotiations to fix the quota of payment for bagasse (the pulp or dry refuse left after the juice has been extracted from sugar cane). The memorandum stated that the cane farmers are to start the season and deliver sugar cane uninterrupted until the season ends; in return BSI would allow negotiations to allocate a portion of funds for payment for bagasse to BSCFA. This concerned many cane farmers as BSI did not necessarily set an agreement for payments.

Caye Caulker Trio charged with drug trafficking
Caye Caulker police arrested and charged a trio for drug trafficking following a house search. On Tuesday January 7th, at about 3PM, police personnel conducted a search at a house located on Traveler’s Palm Street on the island for illegal drugs and firearms. Present at the time of the search were 32-year-old Maurice Usher, Belizean plumber and 48-year-old Steven Jeffrey Arnold, Belizean Laborer, both of the same address. The search led to the discovery of a small brown and blue plastic container hidden inside a box on a shelf. The plastic container was retrieved and opened in the men’s presence, where it was found to contain 16 small transparent Zip-Lock plastic bags, each containing a white powdery substance suspected to be cocaine. It was learned that the common-law wife of Arnold, 35-year-old Emy Keme, Belizean chef of the same address, also resides at the house. She was later detained at her work place and they were all escorted to the station along with the suspected drugs which was weighed and amounted to 12 grams of cocaine.

Wolfe’s Woofer: Doctor’s Diagnosis
Doctor’s Diagnosis “Mr. Wolfe, what seems to be the problem?” the doctor at the clinic asked. “Sir, I haven’t been to the bathroom for a week.” “Here you go,” the doctor said, handing me a prescription. “This is for a powerful laxative. Give it to the nurse as you leave.” “How much is this going […]

San Pedro Police Report
On Thursday, January 9th at around 5:30PM, police officer on duty Juan Choc smelled a strong aroma of cannabis coming from the cell block of the police station. Upon inspection of the cell block, Choc saw a tall curly hair male in the middle of the cell, identified as 19 year old Simon Velasquez, hide a piece of tissue paper by the window of facing west of his cell. Choc proceeded to retrieve the piece of paper and noted that it contained suspected Cannabis. Velasquez was informed of the offence and was escorted to the front of the station where the drugs was weighed in his presence. The cannabis amounted to 0.67 grams. Velasquez was then charged for drug trafficking.

Misc Belizean Sources

NRM Symposium Call for Abstracts
The 9th Natural Resource Management Symposium is scheduled for March 26th, and they are doing a call for abstracts. This year's theme is, get ready for this: Multidisciplinary strategies to achieving sustainable socio-economic development in Belize through effective natural resource management. The deadline is the end of January, so get yours in now. "Our annual NRM symposium is fast approaching. Submit your abstract for an opportunity to present your work.

Rotaract Hosts Intercitidina 2014
The Rotaract Club of San Ignacio is hosting this year's Intercitidina, where Rotaractors from all around Latin America are invited, at the end of the month. They exchange ideas, have team building events, have a fundraising dinner, and even do a community service project. If you are interested in joining Rotaract, they have their meeting's every Friday night at Hode's starting at 7:30pm.

Embassy of Mexico's Year in Review
The Mexican Embassy has released a video chronicling all the events they did around Belize last year. It's a well done video, and they did do quite a few events around Cayo. "Compendio de actividades 2013 de la Embajada de México en Belize/Summary of activities of the Embassy of Mexico in Belize 2013"

When trust is broken…….This woman’s perspective.
Every woman knows what it feels like to be hurt from being lied to and cheated on. It’s our very worst nightmare to even think that a man we love with our entire being would find comfort in the arms of another. But if the truth can be told when a woman catches her partner cheating in a relationship, the hurt is not rooted in the fact that he has been or slept with someone else. She is mad and hurt because she has been lied to. She is upset because she is now faced with the reality that the man she loves is a deceiver. She realizes that she can never trust him the same again because he has no word! The truth is my brothers you did not live up to who she thought you were, you have lost your integrity in the eyes of your lady. She can never look at you the same knowing you are not a man of your word. You have broken her confidence in you. Her knowing that you will do what you said has been shattered. There was a time in my life that I believed that once integrity had been breached, it was impossible to recover it again. I now realize that it’s just extremely difficult but where there is a real desire to make things work that it can happen and has happen to many couples in and around our small community. The reality that I have come to accept as I look around our small country is that MANY people have relationships that have lasted through infidelity. Many relationships have survived the drunken kiss from a stranger, the one night stands and EVEN full blown affairs. As I listen to the many accounts of the cheating man, I realized that as varied as the forms are the reasons and they range from boredom to immaturity or just good old plain -poor judgment.

Wanted man chopped up during home invasion
Wanted fugitive Kevin “Migit” manzanero’s run from the police has ended. The 27 year old was taken into custody by police this afternoon after he sought medical attention for chop wounds. Information received is that Manzanero, one of two men police believe were terrorizing residents of San Ignacio/Santa Elena and Bullet Tree Falls village, was in the process of burglarizing a house on Collins Boulevard on the Bullet Tree Road when he was chopped. Sources say that Manzanero’s chop wounds were so severe he lost an eye. The aggravated burglary, or what’s commonly known as home invasion, happened around midnight on Saturday; but it was not until Sunday afternoon that Manzanero sought medical attention at the San Ignacio hospital.

Stabbing incident on Burns Avenue in San Ignacio town
A stabbing incident last night in the downtown San Ignacio town has left one man hospitalized in Belmopan. The incident is reported to have happened near the Belize Bank ATM on Burns Avenue. According to preliminary information, the victim, identified as Windel Trapp, was attacked by at least two other men. During the attack, Trapp was stabbed multiple times. Windel Trapp has since been transported to the Western Regional Hospital where he is undergoing treatment. Police have one suspect in custody so far as their investigation continues.


Traffic Accident Victim Died Of Severe Head Injury
Yesterday we told you about a triple car pileup that cost the life of 28 year old taxi driver, Marcelo Aguilar, a resident of Concepcion Village. And while the authorities in Corozal say that speeding may have been a factor for his demise, Dr. Hugh Sanchez conducted a post mortem on the body yesterday at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Dr. Sanchez certified Aguilar’s death as severe head injury, a fractured-dislocation of the cervical spine due to road traffic accident. As we reported, sometime before 8 o'clock on Wednesday night, Aguilar was driving his gray Toyota van, accompanied by a 16 year-old and 21 year-old Nelson Pech. They were heading south, away from the Corozal Freezone, and between miles 87 and 88, he lost control of the vehicle. He tried to avoid a head-on collision with a 10-wheeler truck, but his van slammed into one of its rear wheels.

Belize Chamber Of Commerce Comes Out In Support Of Teachers
Today most schools were closed in Belize City as teachers from the BNTU Belize Branch carried put their rally sending a strong message to GOB. Teachers are rallying for their salary increase, which according to them, is long overdue and other social issues. And apparently, apart from having the support of many Belizeans and other organizations, teachers also have the backup of the Belize Chamber of Commerce. In a release issued today the chamber expressed their support to the BNTU by stating and we quote “The Chamber supports the Teachers in their demand for a wage adjustment that better reflects the increased cost of living experienced by all Belizeans and the importance of the teaching profession for our country. While we understand Government's financial position, we believe that a wage adjustment can be afforded if it is responsibly phased in over a number of years.” End quote.

Duo Charged For Drug Trafficking In Corozal
Two persons from the Corozal District are facing the long arm of the law after being charged for drug trafficking. At around 11:30 yesterday morning Corozal Police conducted a search at the residence of Justin Opobouri located on 11th Avenue, Corozal Town. Reports are that upon police entering the yard Opobouri ran out to the back yard with a black plastic bag in hand. One of the officers managed to catch up with Opobouri before he was able to throw the plastic bag over the neighbor’s yard. The bag was found to contain 92.1 grams of cannabis and as such Opobouri was placed under arrest. While police searched the residence of the accused nothing incriminating was found. Also present at the time of the search was Tiffara Josephine Smith who along with Opobouri was escorted to the Corozal Police Station where they were jointly charged for drug trafficking. Since no magistrate was available today in Corozal, the accused were arraigned at the Orange Walk Magistrates Court this afternoon

Orange Walkenos Study Their Way To A Bright Future
Small business owners have strengthened their business entrepreneurial skills while others took an idea and made it a reality after being part of the Business Entrepreneurship Skills Project. The project was implemented by the Social Investment Fund and facilitated by teachers at the Institute of Technical and vocational Education and Training, ITVET in Orange Walk. The project concluded today with a mini exposition of all small business entrepreneurs who took part. Today, Reporter Dalila Ical takes a look at what was on display. Dalila Ical – Reporting The project began in September of 2013 and was offered to residents in San Jose and Guinea Grass Villages in the Orange Walk District. Twenty residents from each village enrolled and completed the courses. Project Manager Cindy Garcia says the biggest part of the program was enabling the participants to design their business plan.

Corozal Residents To Benefit From Free WIFI, Courtesy "Team Papas"
In this fast moving world one has to constantly be keep up with technology, among them internet. A 2013 survey of Caribbean Internet Service Providers revealed that internet in Belize is not only among the slowest in the region, but it is the most expensive. Hence the service cannot be afforded by everyone. Knowing how important internet access is especially for students, Gregorio Papas Garcia, PUP Standard Bearer Candidate for Corozal Bay and his team have embarked in a special project that will see the launching of free WIFI access at the Corozal Central Park. According to Garcia, the project will be launched tomorrow. Gregorio Papas Garcia- PUP Standard Bearer Candidate, Corozal Bay “It is going to be there for all public use; students, tourists, all people that transit the area so it is free WIFI and the user named is “Team Papas” of course it doesn’t have any password, you know it is for the general use for the public of Corozal.”

Mother Nature Continues To Attack Farmers MOA Assists
The sporadic weather continues to increase losses to farmers across the country. Here in the north, vegetable farmers are experiencing significant losses as some have been unable to plant while those who did, have no crop to harvest due to overly saturated soil. The constant rains have provoked hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of loss in the agriculture sector. Government conducted a damage assessment late last year but as the weather pattern fails to improve, farmers continue to lose their crop. Given the national impact the rains are having, the government, through the Ministry of Agriculture, is providing some assistance to farmers across the country. This morning farmers congregated in Orange Walk Town to receive the much needed assistance. Dalila Ical reports. Dalila Ical – Reporting Farmers from the Belize, Orange Walk and Corozal Districts today received seeds, fertilizers and food coupons from the government in an effort of easing the financial loss they have sustained due to continuous rains. Present for the ceremony was Minister of Natural Resources and Agriculture, Gaspar Vega.

Sugar Season Further Delayed
Whilst there has been some breakthrough in the negotiations for payment for Baggasse to farmers, tonight news is that the start of the Sugar Cane season will be pushed back a few more days. This is largely contributed to weather conditions and today, all three parties, BSI, BSCFA and GOB met to discuss a way forward to meet these challenges. Reporter Maria Novelo was there and filed this report. The Sugar Cane Season will see a further four day delay due to the deplorable conditions of the sugar roads, a fact compounded by the inclement weather. As it is, only two of the 18 divisions of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association are ready to supply cane to the Sugar Factory. Financial Controller of BSI, Belizario Carballo Jr says farmers agreed to wait since there is much difficulty in getting cane to the mill. Belizario Carballo – Financial Controller, BSI “This week we have had some rain and so that has delayed further the programs for the sugar roads and so we decided that we will get together today, yesterday the ministry of works carried their assessment of the road conditions and today we met to get a report from the ministry of works engineers, it is a technical decision really and the assessment is like I said the works are just getting underway, weather has not permitted much yet but there is a good feel that we can allow those works to continue for another few days each day that passes works is being advance to complete the whole project that is planned to require about two weeks, they estimate that it would need two weeks that they would be able to have 80 to 90% complete in terms of what they plan to do, in terms of sugar roads.”

Caye Caulker Chronicles

CCVC planning Valentine’s Dance
10pm at the basketball court, Feb. 15th

The Belize Times

Back to PUP Roots! – Party Leader commits to Social Justice for Belizeans
Opposition Leader Hon. Francis Fonseca has declared that under his leadership the People’s United Party will return to its core philosophy of social justice to make the next PUP Government more progressive, just and people-centered. Hon. Fonseca made the declaration on Wednesday, January 15, at the launching of the PUP’s Social Justice Agenda – a 10-point document which sets out the Party’s platforms for development in social and economic areas. “The Belizean people deserve a Government focused on development and less politics, a Government with a clear plan to develop Belize and one that offers solutions,” stated the PUP Leader. The Social Justice Agenda is aimed at making Belizeans have greater benefits and lead more productive lives through the eradication of poverty, universal access to quality and relevant education, allow greater citizen participation in economic growth and the fair distribution of wealth and access to wealth, assistance and support for vulnerable citizens, the democratic and non-political distribution of land, increase in minimum wage, a review of national legislation to better protect the rights of Belizeans, and deepening the protection of our rights and freedoms enshrined in the constitution.

INSIDER TRADING? – CitCo approves opening of Bar in BTL Park!!
Deon Leslie, a current City Councilor and former Deputy Mayor of Belize City could be sitting in the hot seat if reliable reports are confirmed that he has been gifted with the lease to operate a ...

CASTRO Corruption Continues!! – Airport Authority pays Bike Repairs & Dental Care….but for whom?
The messy scandal at the Belize Airport Authority involving the Minister in charge (Ministry of Transport), Edmund Castro, is about to get more nefarious and disgraceful. So far, the BELIZE TIMES has exposed cheques #004951 and #005064 ...

H1N1 Alert!! – Young Belize City mother dies of deadly virus, Health officials warn public
The death of 29-year-old Shahera Bodden from the H1N1 influenza virus last Monday, January 6th, is only the latest failure of Belize’s failed health system that also allowed 13 babies to die in ...

Think About It
SOCIAL JUSTICE The new Leader of the People’s United Party has made a significant move. He choose the 15 of January for his public pronouncement. This date is the birth date of the greatest political leader and co-founder of the P.U.P. – George Price. With his keen vision and foresight, ...

Unions Wake Up!
By G. Michael Reid It seems that the Prime Minister and his United Democratic Party just do not get it. The people of Belize are sick and tired of the blatant corruption and robbing of our taxes and natural resources. The teachers, who have been quiet and tolerant for a long ...

Much to the surprise of Patrick Faber, the teachers of Belize have taken the bold decision to publicly demonstrate against the woes of this corrupt and chancey Barrow administration. Faber has been throwing tantrums on the airwaves, upset that the UDP-friendly union leaders have been unable to tame the masses of teachers and public officers who can no longer stomach the BS that Barrow has been spewing. Promise after empty promise of a salary adjustment, tagged first to a phantom oil find, then to a surplus in revenue to be paid in July (and now maybe August) has caused teachers to become disillusioned, frustrated and skeptical of Barrow and his shenanigans. Understandably, the teachers don’t plan on falling for another “Happy Birthday Dear George Fraser” come July. They are wasting no time bringing it to Barrow. And why should they, when Barrow has publicly declared that he has millions and millions to spend on saving his own backside from losing a seat in Cayo Northeast. Day after day the government continues to demonstrate that they do not consider the teachers a “threat” to their grip on power.

Verdes is #1 entering football playoffs
Verdes F.C. of Benque Viejo Del Carmen will take on 4th place FC Belize when the Belikin Cup football playoffs kick off at the MCC Gardens in Belize City on Sunday, ...

Wesley College undefeated in high school football Wesley College undefeated in high school football
The Wesley College boys are leading undefeated in the high school football competition. On Monday, the Wesley College boys posted their 2nd win against the Anglican Cathedral College boys ...

Team NICH wins Boom to Manatee Lodge canoe race Team NICH wins Boom to Manatee Lodge canoe race
Team NICH’s Oscar Cordon, and brothers Felix and Efrain Cruz won the annual Boom to Manatee Lodge race, in preparation for the grueling 4-day Ruta Maya River Challenge on ...

PUP Marshalls step up to the challenge!
Tired of being neglected by the UDP San Pedro Town Board and UDP Area Representative Minister Manuel Herredia, the PUP Marshalls of San Pedro Town came together to serve their community. Spearheaded by Marshalls member, Nigel Belisle, ...

AMAZING GRACE – If God Truly Exists
In the Operating Manual, Psalms 53:1 harshly states, “The Fool says in his heart there is no God”. For the New Year I decided that I would read the Manual all the way from the beginning and work towards the end. This led me to the story of the first ...

HOME ECONOMICS – Cement Manufacturing in Belize
By Richard Harrison Cement is made from limestone, clay and gypsum...all of which are available naturally in Belize in commercial quantities. Belize imports all its cement supply from Mexico, El Salvador and Jamaica....a total of around US$150 million per year is traded in the domestic market, approximately 0.15 M tpa. A BZ$3.5 billion ...

Bullying: Stop it and Make a Difference
By Angela Banner-Joseph Ten-year-old Samuel was nervous; he had been moody and stayed by himself when he was at home. When his parents asked what was wrong, he started yelling and crying to be left alone. Samuel said that three boys at school had been calling him names, hitting him, and kicking him, ...

Address by PUP Chairman, Henry C. Usher, at launching of Social Justice Agenda
Today 15th January would have marked the 95th birthday of the Father of Belize, Right Hon. George Price. On behalf of the Price family I would like to thank all the Belizeans who attended ...

UDP heavyweights fight over land!!
There is a nasty fight going on among UDP political heavyweights over a small but prime piece of land in Belize City. The land in question is Block No. 16 Parcel ...

Street upgrades in Dangriga begin
The first phase of the much anticipated street upgrades in Dangriga Town, carried out under the auspices of the Dangriga Town Council, has begun. Work has commenced on Isla Street in the Lakeland Area and San ...

REFLECTIONS ON THE PUBLIC SQUARE – George Price and Social Justice
By Francis W. Fonseca This past Wednesday, January 15th, 2014, our People’s United Party marked two distinct yet deeply interwoven events. January 15th is of course the birthday of our Great Leader, National Hero and Father of the Nation George Price. We, the Leaders, members and supporters of the PUP, consider ourselves to ...

Monies Missing at Corozal Town Council – Former Revenue Manager points to Mayor and Town Administrator
The Corozal Town Council, led by absentee UDP Mayor Hilberto Campos and a band of do-nothing Councillors, is the latest to join the list of UDP-ran offices under deep scandal. Monies ...

BNTU protests stingy UDP & Barrow
The People’s United Party government was the last administration to give Belizean teachers and public officers a much-deserved raise in 2005. The failure of the United Democratic ...

AMAZING GRACE – Book Covers… which is yours?
“Man is not what he thinks he is; he is what he hides.” French novelist, André Malraux captures the essence of man’s ability to deceive in this one profound quote. How often have we all heard the age-old proverb, “don’t judge a book by its cover”? Sometimes, what you ...


Bring out Your Inner Island Artist with Painting Classes by Melody
Or realize that you don’t really have one. Either way, painting with talented Melody is very good times. Friday night, I walked down the beach to Feliz Bar for a 6pm painting class. Feliz Bar is located just about 1/2 a mile over the bridge (if headed north from San Pedro town) and they have a very cool upstairs space that is perfect for group events. They have done this class before…quite a few times and featured pictures like this on the Feliz Facebook page.

N. Ambergris Caye Mile 4 Down to Mile 1: A Walk from Las Terrazas Resort to Feliz Bar For Painting Class
Yesterday was a cold grey day in San Pedro, Belize. I honestly don’t remember a day where I wore a long sleeved shirt and a jacket while walking on the beach. Mid-day. BUT it was still a beautiful day. I had a full afternoon planned…take the 12:30pm Coastal Express water taxi up north, lunch at O Restaurant at Las Terrazas Resort (about 4 miles north) and then a slow walk down to Feliz Bar for a 6pm painting class with Belizean Melody. Here is Las Terrazas’ pool and the restaurant. I mean…seriously? Even on a grey day this place looks GORGEOUS. I’m hoping to head up next week, bring some actual sun and take some even prettier pictures. And maybe lounge by the pool for a bit. Inside is pretty cool too. Look at those balls hanging…made from wine corks.

Do you celebrate Martin Luther King Day? Belize joins you!
On the third Monday of January, all of us here at Chaa Creek join the world in observing Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and this year, with the recent passing of Nelson Mandela, the day takes on a particular significance and poignancy. We may have lost two great icons of equal rights, but their legacy lives on, and the world is a much better place because of them. This is the importance of Martin Luther King, Jr Day – that each year everything he stood for is remembered and passed on to more and more people. In a world where strife has become commonplace, the non-violent activism Doctor King espoused stands out as something to be not only remembered, but embraced as a way of life. Imagine living in the world that Doctor King, Gandhi and Mandela envisioned. A world where, as Bob Marley put it, the colour of a man’s skin is of no more significance than the colour of his eyes, and where everyone has equal access to opportunity and the freedom to pursue their dreams.

International Sources

Tree Fellers Revisited
70 years after he left Belize as a member of the British Honduras Forestry Unit Sam Martinez, who lives in Edinburgh Scotland and is a youthful 103, sees his home village of Barranco for the first time and is greeted by some residents in the Garifuna language.